Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show


We have a 2001 Saab 9-3 whose tires continually go bad. (They continually leak air) What are good tires for this car.


It might be that the wheel rims are causing the tires to lose air. If the rims are defective, new tires won’t solve the problem of leaking air.

There may be another problem such as alloy wheels (cast metal, rather than stamped sheet metal). The valve stems may be leaking and may need the valve cores tightened or changed. The tires may have nails in them. Good tires are good tires. A top brand should be good for any car. People on this site have their favorites and they will recommend them. I bought tires for a truck recently and I should have bought the better ones from a Goodyear dealer instead of the version at Sam’s Club. I’m sure that some of the Sam’s ones are identical to the regular ones, but mine were not.

Air leaks are not normally a problem with a specific make or model of tyre. As the others have suggested, I would look for other problems. Specifically, you need to find out where they are loosing air. That usually is done in a water tank.

Today it appears the usual problem are the cheap alloy wheels that the manufacturer’s supply or are commonly available at tyre stores. The really good alloy wheels are great, but they are also very expensive.

Definetley bad wheels. Get rid of the car (Because it is a Saab), or get better wheels. Who knows what the second guy is talking about - surely you’ve had new valve stems with new tires.

“surely you’ve had new valve stems with new tires”

Maybe, or maybe not.

If the OP has been in the habit of using a low-end retailer who is trying to cut corners, it is possible that the retailer has re-used the old valve stems. Then, there is also the issue of defective Dill brand (Chinese-made) tire valves that flooded our market last year. There is an active recall of these defective tire valves that the OP should look into, just in case he/she has a set of these typically poor-quality Chinese products. Here is a link for information regarding that recall campaign:

There is also the issue of porosity of some alloy wheels as they age. This issue seems to affect alloy wheels on some makes of cars, but seems to have no particular pattern of occurrence.

Before going to the extreme of buyng new tires, or going to the ridiculous extreme of buying a new car because of dissatisfaction with the tires, I would suggest that the OP visit a high-end shop in order to have the wheels inspected and/or to have the valve stems replaced by someone competent.

Then, there is also the issue of defective Dill brand (Chinese-made) tire valves that flooded our market last year.

We had a defective valve stem “give way” on us back in October. My wife and I were driving on the interstate when the right front tire began loosing air, rather quickly. Good thing we were in the right lane and could pull over.

It turned out to be a bad valve stem. The stem was only about two years old but the “tell tale” infamous cracks had developed in the lower part of the stem. It was pretty scary.

Do you know if the tires are original on the vehicle? Aggie indicates Texas to me and tires do not last 7 years if original in that environment easily without cracks and the like which can lead to leaks etc.

I have replaced tires with a Toyo tires at reputable dealer–my other car has had same dealer replace tires.